From: https://www.britishcouncil.org/about-us/how-we-work: Although we receive a government grant in aid, the British Council is operationally independent from the UK government. All our work contributes to our purpose and Royal Charter (PDF 180kb) aims'[to] advance, for the public benefit, any purpose which is exclusively charitable and which shall
(a) promote cultural relationships between the people of the United Kingdom and other countries;
(b) develop a wider knowledge of the English language; and
(c) encourage educational co-operation between the United Kingdom and other countries, support the advancement of United Kingdom education and education standards overseas, and otherwise promote education.'